Hovingham Hall

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Hovingham Hall, 2006

Hovingham Hall is a grade I listed Palladian-style mansion in the village of Hovingham, North Yorkshire, England, the home of the Worsley family and the childhood home of the Duchess of Kent. It was built in the 18th century on a site the Worsleys have occupied since the 16th century.

It is built of limestone ashlar with Westmoreland slate roofs to an L-shaped floor plan. An attached stable wing forms the main entrance. [1]


The Worsley family bought Hovingham manor in 1563.

The present house was built between 1750 and 1770 by Thomas Worsley VI (1710–1778), who was Surveyor-General to the Board of Works and designed the building himself. Unusually, it was developed around the existing stable block, which now forms the main entrance (see picture} and once housed a Riding School where Thomas taught George III to ride. Thomas was Whig MP for Orford from 1761 to 1768 and for Callington from 1768 to 1774. He was succeeded by his son Edward and he in turn in 1830 by his nephew William (1792–1879)[2] who in 1838 was made first Baronet Worsley of Hovingham. [3]

In front of the house is a cricket pitch, possibly the oldest private pitch in England. Colonel Sir William Arthington Worsley, 4th Baronet was the captain of Yorkshire County Cricket Club in 1928 and 1929. He was also Lord Lieutenant of the North Riding of Yorkshire from 1951 to 1965. He was succeeded by his son Sir (William) Marcus John Worsley, 5th Baronet (1925–2012), who was MP for Keighley and Chelsea, Lord Lieutenant of North Yorkshire and High Sheriff of North Yorkshire for 1982-83.[4] The 5th Baronet's younger sister was Katharine Lucy Mary Worsley, who became The Duchess of Kent.[3]

The house is currently lived in by Sir William Ralph Worsley, 6th Baronet (eldest son of the 5th Baronet) and his wife Marie-Noelle.

It is now a Grade I listed building. The house and gardens are open to the public for a limited time each year but is closed on Sundays.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Hovingham Hall, Hovingham". British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 12 February 2013. 
  2. ^ Burke, John (1838). A Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Commoners of Great Britain, Volume 4. p. 603. OCLC 851706872. 
  3. ^ a b "Hovingham Hall opens to the public". The Press. Retrieved 12 February 2013. 
  4. ^ "Farewell to Sir Marcus Worsley". The Telegraph. Retrieved 13 February 2013. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 54°10′20″N 0°58′51″W / 54.172318°N 0.980869°W / 54.172318; -0.980869